The Cloud, Data Privacy are Top Trends at Strata Data NY

The cloud, ethics in artificial intelligence, privacy, and compliance were some of the topics that attendees were concerned about at Strata Data NY as data professionals converged at the Jacob Javits Center in New York City from September 24 – 26.

Cloud continues to dominate conversations. Jim Walker, vice president of product marketing for Cockroach Labs, said it’s not a question of if businesses are moving to the cloud but how companies can now work with hosting applications and data in the cloud.

“In 2020 there’ll be a paradigm shift,” Walker said. “Cloud will bring more efficiency and scale to enterprises.”

Syncsort’s Tendu Yogurtcu, CTO, agreed with Walker. She said hybrid cloud combined with streaming is leading to the real-time insights that enterprises crave.

As GDPR went into effect last year, companies are now grappling with discussions about ethics and bias within new privacy regulations, said Andreas Wesselmann, senior vice President, SAP products & innovations, big data. There’s also a push and pull between how much protections will cost.

“The next wave is a focus on unstructured data,” said Zachary Jarvinen, head of technology strategy for AI and analytics, at OpenText. “Businesses will tackle with how to read this information while also managing sensitive data.”

The rapid pace of AI and automation brings a host of new concerns regarding ethics, as well.

“How do we educate those people about automation and job loss?” Wesselmann said. “We need continuous learning in regards to other jobs and managing value creation.”

Enterprises must figure out how to create harmony between humans and machine learning, Emma McGrattan, SVP Engineering at Actian, said.

“It’s going to be a challenge for us, we have to make sure machine learning considers humans,” McGrattan said.

At OpenText, Wesslemann said the company is focusing on pragmatic solutions to help consumers deal with challenges stemming from AI.

“People want different things out of AI,” Wesslemann said. “So we give each user a friendly interface to interact with. “

Yogurtcu also sees real time adoption of machine learning and AI taking center stage this upcoming decade.

“When users talked about AI last year, they really meant a deeper use of machine learning,” Yogurtcu said.

Other experts said Kubernetes, graph databases, and blockchain are the next of technology advances for 2020 and beyond.

“We’re starting to see graph databases become more mainstream,” said Denise Gosnell, head of global practice at DataStax. “There’s so much more information coming out to understand what graphs can do.”